55 years ago today - Sep 27, 1965

Reflecting Ezra Taft Benson's son Reed Benson's instructions to Utah members of the Birch Society, one rumor claimed that "2,000 professional demonstrators and Black Muslims will be imported to this area under NAACP sponsorship." Other widely circulated stories were that "all plane flights from Los Angeles to Salt Lake are chartered by `Watts Negroes,'" and that "3500 `transient Negroes' have already arrived in Salt Lake." As a result, the Utah National Guard began "riot control" maneuvers.

["NAACP Says 'Too Fantastic' Rumors of Demonstrations," Ogden Standard-Examiner, 27 Sept. 1965, 20; "Race Riots in Utah?" Daily Utah Chronicle, 28 Sept. From D. Michael Quinn, Ezra Taft Benson and Mormon Political Conflicts, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 26:2 (Summer 1992), also in Quinn, The Mormon Hierarchy: Extensions of Power Salt Lake City (Signature Books, 1994), Chapter 3.]

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